Economics (Justice,Greed,Tax) Reader Stories

Feed Your Child, or Feed The Corporation? “Forgive Us Our Debts!” – a Mother’s Story

[This is unsolicited and unverified. But it’s the kind of thing that’s happening all over, with millions of variations of detail. It raises important questions without offering any easy answers. But the fact that a good part of our leadership and our media want to mock and malign the questions – and the questioners – says a lot about the moral level of serious converstion in this country. This story makes “forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors” seem like a pretty relevant, realistic petition for the powers that be in the US today. I give a special “Thank you, and may God bless you” to the author and her daughter.]

I am a single mother of a 13 year old girl, and I have been put in the position of choosing to feed her or pay credit card debts. We both suffer from several health problems (most of which are genetic) and we both receive Social Security Disability. I used to work part time, but it got to be too stressful, which made me sicker, so I had to quit.

For the past 13 years I’ve been extended credit and run up credit card debt. I’ve always managed to pay my bills on time and have excellent credit. Most of the things I bought with credit were things I needed for my daughter or for car repairs from mechanics who took advantage of me. I was responsible, stopped using credit, and went to credit counseling to get a handle on my debt in January. The credit counselor actually told to stop paying on the two highest cards. This was because they cannot take my type of income and I simply do not have the resources to pay them what they want and run a household at the same time. I didn’t want to ruin my
credit so I tried for six months to pay them and tend to my daughter’s needs at the same time.

Last month was a turning point for me, we ran out of money around the 15th and had to deal with it. My daughter lost weight. I realized my credit score wasn’t as important as her, and the credit counselor was right. So, here I am with an ethical dilemma, not paying the debts I am responsible for or the well being of my child. I chose her. But this was an awful place to be put in in the first place. I am torn, and feeling like an irresponsible idiot for being in this situation in the first place. One of my Christian friends doesn’t think I should stop paying these companies, that I should save my reputation. But how will my reputation look to God if I chose to support some godless corporations over my own child?

My last church also said that in the Bible it said that if you don’t work, you don’t eat, so I feel a certain amount of guilt for not working also. I also feel guilty for feeling angry about my current situation, because I have much more than other poor people around the world have.
This is what the Republicans want me to think apparently too.

I go to the food bank, and can’t use a lot of the food they give me because my daughter and I both have severe food allergies. They get mad at you there if you try to exchange an item for something else (like you are an ungrateful, picky rat), so I simply don’t take many of the things
there or give away the things we are allergic to. So, if I can try to share what I do have is it too much to ask of others in this country that have so much? How can constantly taking more and more away from the poor be good for the economy anyway? What are the limits of greed? I haven’t seen the limits, and don’t expect to for some time.

Well, thanks for listening to my little rant, and for your website – one of the last friendly Christian websites still out there.

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1 Comment

  • I am sorry to hear you being abused with people’s legalistic, mean-spirited ideas of God.

    The challenge presented is to love those believers despite their short-sightedness. Which doesn’t mean that their advice is good.

    It brings this to mind: We mirror ourselves in God. Depending on who we are, and what is in our hearts, so we see God.

    2 Samuel 22:26 – 27: 22:26
    With the faithful
    You prove Yourself faithful;
    with the blameless man
    You prove Yourself blameless;
    with the pure
    You prove Yourself pure,
    but with the crooked
    You prove Yourself shrewd.


    Matthew 25:24 – 29
    : 25:24
    “Then the man who had received one talent also approached and said, ‘Master, I know you. You’re a difficult man, reaping where you haven’t sown and gathering where you haven’t scattered seed.
    So I was afraid and went off and hid your talent in the ground. Look, you have what is yours.’
    “But his master replied to him, ‘You evil, lazy slave! If you knew that I reap where I haven’t sown and gather where I haven’t scattered,
    then you should have deposited my money with the bankers. And when I returned I would have received my money back with interest.
    “‘So take the talent from him and give it to the one who has 10 talents.
    For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have more than enough. But from the one who does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him.

    Try to keep your heart strong, and may God redeem and bless your financial picture.